Hain Celestial shuffles leadership team

by Rebekah Schouten
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Hain Celestial headquarters
In recent months, Hain Celestial has sorted through financial challenges.

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y. — Hain Celestial Group, Inc. has announced seven executive team appointments for Hain Celestial United States, Hain Pure Protein Corp. and Hain Celestial United Kingdom.

“We are very pleased to announce the appointment of these seasoned consumer packaged foods industry executives,” said Irwin D. Simon, founder, president and chief executive officer of Hain Celestial. “They further strengthen our worldwide leadership team, and their future contributions will be invaluable as Hain Celestial grows to the next level internationally with the strength of our diversified portfolio of organic, natural and better-for-you brands.”

Gary Tickle, Hain Celestial
Gary W. Tickle

Gary W. Tickle will join Hain Celestial United States as chief operating officer. In his new role, he will oversee the sale and marketing functions for Hain’s Better-for-You Snacking and Better-for-You Pantry platforms and brands in the United States. Most recently, Mr. Tickle was president and c.e.o. of Nestle Infant Nutrition North America. Prior to that role, Mr. Tickle held various other executive roles with Nestle, including global head of the maternal and infant nutrition business unit in Vevey, Switzerland, regional business head of infant nutrition for South Asia and c.e.o. of Nestle’s Auckland, New Zealand, branch.

Jerome Erskin, Hain Celestial
Jerome “Jay” W. Erskin

Jerome “Jay” W. Erskin has been named chief supply chain officer of Hain Celestial United States. Most recently, Mr. Erskin was chief operating officer at SK Food Group, Inc. Before that, he was vice-president of operations at Chobani, L.L.C., plant director and procurement director for The Dannon Co., Inc., and manufacturing and procurement manager at Kraft Foods Inc.

Jamie Fay, Hain Celestial
James “Jamie” F. G. Fay

James “Jamie” F. G. Fay has joined Hain Celestial as chief customer officer. Most recently, Mr. Fay was senior vice-president of global sales for Nature’s Path Foods. Before that, he held positions of increasing responsibility at Mars, Inc., ascending to senior vice-president of sales for Mars Chocolate North America. Mr. Fay also worked in various sales and marketing positions for Groupe Danone in the United States and Canada.

Leah Dunmore, Hain Celestial
Leah Dunmore

Leah Dunmore will assume the role of vice-president of marketing for the Better-for-You Pantry segment of Hain Celestial United States. Previously, Ms. Dunmore worked as the vice-president of U.S. soup for the Campbell Soup Co. and marketing director of the M&M’s brand for Mars Chocolate North America.

Tim Collins, Hain Celestial
Tim Collins

Tim Collins joins the Celestial Seasonings unit of Hain Celestial United States as vice-president of marketing. Mr. Collins previously was marketing director of Kraft Enhancers and associate marketing director for frozen snacks at the Kraft Heinz Co. and senior brand manager of Teavana at Starbucks.

James. R. Meiers has been named c.e.o. of Hain Pure Protein Corp., overseeing the Empire Kosher, Plainville Farms and FreeBird poultry brands and the protein business of Hain Celestial. Mr. Meiers also will continue his responsibilities as c.o.o. for Hain Celestial.

James Skidmore has been promoted to c.e.o. of Hain Daniels, Hain Celestial United Kingdom. Mr. Skidmore joined the company with the Orchard House Foods Ltd. acquisition in December 2015. In his new role, he will be responsible for the Hain Daniels business units, including Hartley’s, New Covenant Garden Soup Co., Linda McCartney’s, Sun-Pat and Robertson’s brands.

In recent months, Hain Celestial has sorted through financial challenges, delaying the release of its fourth-quarter and full-year results in August and stating it did not expect to achieve its previously announced guidance for fiscal year 2016. This announcement sent the company’s shares into a tailspin, plunging by as much as 30%. The company now has until Feb. 27, 2017, to file its periodic reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The delay in the filing of Hain’s financials also has muddied the waters on some major changes the company unveiled earlier this spring as it sets its sights on going from a $3 billion business to a $5 billion business. In November 2015, Hain Celestial launched Project Terra, a strategic review of the company, and in May 2016, management said one of the changes to come out of the program would be a $100 million global cost savings plan over the next two fiscal years, beginning with fiscal 2017. Related to this effort, Hain Celestial this past November launched Cultivate Ventures, a strategic platform dedicated to investing in lifestyle brands, smaller portfolio brands and concepts, with plans to divest brands representing approximately $30 million in net sales. 
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